A new option for classic Cajun fare like red beans and rice and shrimp etouffee has arrived in Memorial. The eagerly anticipated new location of Treebeards has been quietly open for a week and will begin dinner service on Thursday, October 15.
Not only is the new location the first Treebeards to be located outside of downtown Houston; it is also the first to serve both dinner and cocktails. Located in Moody National's new development along the Katy Freeway just east of Bunker Hill Rd. (9655 Katy Freeway, Suite 3120), the approximately 6,000-square-foot restaurant seats 140 inside, with bar seating for 36 and a patio that seats 40. Interior design elements include a mural by local artist Gonzo247 and artwork from the restaurant's Market Square location that closed in June. It will soon be joined in the complex by the new location of fine dining restaurant Masraff's and another Texadelphia.
"We are thrilled to bring the tradition of Treebeards to our neighborhood,” Treebeards co-owner Jolie Stinneford said in a statement. “After more than 40 years in downtown Houston, we have answered our loyal customers’ requests to expand and are very thankful we were able to find a such fantastic location for this new version of Treebeards; we can’t wait to share our southern comfort food — and exciting new food and drink additions — with west Houston residents and nearby office workers.”
Those exciting new additions come in the form of the restaurant's first ever bar menu and cocktail list. Consulting chef Matt Marcus (Eatsie Boys, 8th Wonder Brewery) created a menu of bar bites that includes pimento cheese dip, crab and shrimp queso, deviled eggs, and marinated crab claws. Bartender Linda Salinas, whose consulting resume includes Jonathan's the Rub Memorial Green and Ninfa's, has developed riffs on classic cocktails including the spritz, margarita, Old Fashioned, and Manhattan (Full disclosure: Salinas is also a regular guest on CultureMap's "What's Eric Eating" podcast). Beers (draft and packaged) and wines by-the-glass or bottle are also available.
While the new options will help broaden the restaurant's appeal, Treebeards remains anchored by the same Cajun/Creole fare it has served since 1978. That starts with signature items such as red beans and rice, shrimp etouffee, and gumbo. True fans know the jalapeno corn bread and a slice of cake for dessert are almost equally essential.
Daily specials such as blackened catfish and shrimp and grits keep things interesting. At dinner, new dishes include a stuffed pork chop and roasted salmon with mustard sauce.
Opening the Memorial location isn't the restaurant's only new initiative. Texans fans will find a new Treebeards stadium on the club level at NRG Stadium; its dishes will also be available in suites.
The restaurant is currently open for lunch from 11 am to 3 pm. Beginning October 15, it will be open daily from 11 am until 9 pm.